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Thread: urban planning in manhattan - different neighborhoods

  1. #1

    Default urban planning in manhattan - different neighborhoods

    I am currently doing a bachelor thesis on the development of manhattan neighborhoods and hope to get some more thorough information here in the forum.

    The specific discussion is wether neighborhoods profit and gain more by a gradually changing urban environment or by a sort of "top-down" master-planning where entire districts are completely planned and built in a very short amount of time.

    what neighborhoods come to mind for either category?
    is it important for a neighborhood to grow and be able to maintain its history and character while adapting to the needs of the city, the people, the tourists, etc...? does this maybe even be the key to its success?
    is a masterplan really important to keep order and a high quality of life?

    I am of the opinion that a city, and therefor its neighborhoods, needs vitality, identity, dynamics and change in order to be vital, fun and in a way healthy in its function as a neighborhood of a major city such as new york.
    The juxtaposition of old and new, historic and innovative, is what makes neighborhoods and its streets interesting and attracts people.

    I dont want to say too much, basically just outline my topic. I am hoping that I might get some more fresh ideas to the subject.
    I would be very thankful for any insight, ideas, developments, links, and especially opinions
    Thanks in advance,

  2. #2


    what neighborhoods come to mind for either category?
    western side of lower hells kitchen- the part they are now calling the far west side,
    and Hudson yards in Chelsea.

    all being wiped clean and replaced with new.

  3. #3


    hi scumonkey, thank you for your reply.
    Thats good to know. So far I have only studied projects in the past that have been planned in a short amount of time and have cleared what exsisted before. Mostly under the influence of Robert Moses in the 50ies.
    Do you have any resources and links to the projects? Do you have any personal opinion about what is planned? I am really interested and eager to have a (maybe) different opinion on the subject
    what would you define as districts that have gradually evolved with time and adapted to the spirit of the time, changing into a very trendy and popular neighborhood?

  4. #4


    I would check out some journal articles on the topic. I wrote a paper on a similar topic a while ago. You'll want to start with Harvard Design Magazine fall 2006 (all about Battery Park City) and researching the Urban Land Institute (Urban Land Magazine)

  5. #5


    thank you dbhstockton,
    i cant locate the harvard magazine of fall 06 actually from europe so im not in new york right now. So im doing as much research as possible from afar for now. Im going to keep looking for that you know how to get it?
    and i was actually hoping to get some personal thoughts of people who are maybe directly in manhattan so that i can get e better account of things by people who maybe experienced things about the topic or just have a personal opinion about it. im really interested in the changes effect the people within the neighborhoods that have either gone through changes which developed gradually or have been planned and executed on a site that has been bulldozed...


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